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Banks, Fintechs, telcos under investigation for data privacy breaches

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Director General (NITDA), Pantami. Photo/Twitter/nitdanigeria

The National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), is currently investigating some Nigerian banks, financial technology companies (Fintechs), and telecommunications companies (telcos) for alleged breach of data privacy rights.
   
Although NITDA is silent on the specific organisations alleged to be culpable, it, however, assured Nigerians of their data privacy rights, saying there is an ongoing investigation of an alleged breach of data privacy rights by some Data Controllers.
   
Recall that NITDA issued the Nigeria Data Protection Regulation (NDPR) on January 25, to stem wanton abuse of data privacy, improve the global image of Nigerian business environment, and to stimulate a data economy, which would lead to the creation of 300,000 jobs by 2022.
   
NITDA noted that in an effort to sensitise the general public and create the requisite awareness on the regulation, a series of publications were made in the electronic, print, and new media. 
   
The Agency said it has also written articles, made paper presentations, and facilitated public and privately organised fora for the purpose of deepening compliance with the NDPR.
  
“We are happy to say that Nigerians and non-Nigerians have taken note of the NDPR as evidenced by over 400 phone calls and numerous email inquiries being received and treated daily,” it said.

The Director-General/Chief Executive Officer, NITDA, Dr. Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami, said in a statement that the Agency has gone further to prepare a detailed Draft Data Protection Implementation Framework, also available on its website for inputs from the general public.
  
“The Framework details expectations from every stakeholder. Furthermore, a sample Privacy Policy is to guide government agencies and the private sector in compliance with the NDPR.
  
“NITDA is currently investigating some entities including Banks, Fintechs, Telcos, among others, who are in alleged breach of the NDPR. The Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS), is also under investigation for alleged violation of Article 2.1(2, 3) of the NDPR. We, therefore, wish to assure all Nigerians that NITDA is willing, able and ready to implement the NDPR with the ultimate aim of ensuring compliance and making businesses and government work better for every Nigerian,’’ Pantami stated.
   
Pantami reminded the public that NITDA is a Federal Government agency established in April 2001, to implement the Nigerian Information Technology Policy, as well as coordinate general IT development and regulation in the country.
  
He said Section 6(a, b & m) of the Act mandates NITDA to create a framework for the planning, research, development, standardisation, application, coordination, monitoring, evaluation and regulation of Information Technology practices, activities and systems in Nigeria.

It also provides guidelines to facilitate the establishment and maintenance of appropriate infrastructure for information technology and systems application and development in Nigeria for public and private sectors, urban-rural development, the economy, and the government.

It further accelerates Internet and intranet penetration in Nigeria, and promote sound internet Governance by giving effect to the Second Schedule of the Act.

 


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